Why the race card?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by theDoctorisIn, Sep 27, 2010.

  1. theDoctorisIn
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    theDoctorisIn Senior Mod Staff Member Senior USMB Moderator

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    As a companion to my other thread, this one is about rhetorical tactics used by the Left.

    The current trend in Left-wing rhetoric is flagrant use of the race card (at least in certain areas). "Racism" and other "-ism" words have suddenly become the new shut-down comment from the Left. Where does this trend come from?

    Is it just because the left is currently the party in power? Is it purely a defensive strategy? Simple, emotionally charged rhetoric? Or is it something more?

    Discuss.
     
  2. PLYMCO_PILGRIM
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    PLYMCO_PILGRIM Gold Member

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    People are afraid of being labelled a racist due to many reasons. By calling someone whom you disagree with as being a racist you bring this fear to the front. Many people will stop talking, get nervous, or even self-concious over the label being thrown at them.

    Basically it is using fear to silence those whom you are opposed to instead of using rational debate to do it.

    It works on some and others (like me) know themselves well enough to laugh in the face of people who try to use the label and call them out for their lack of intellect on whatever topic was being discussed.


    Thats my opinion...its an easy cop-out to debating something.

    Sometimes its true too...thats a whole different situation.
     
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  3. MaggieMae
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    MaggieMae Reality bits

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    I see very little of it, at least on this board. There are a few posters who, although they don't admit to being racist, are easily identified just by their subtle comments. I'm sure there were a great deal of people who hated the fact that a black man became President. But there will always be people like that.
     
  4. QUENTIN
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    QUENTIN VIP Member

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    There is genuinely quite a bit of racism coming form the right right now, there always has been but it's been amplified by the election of a black man they view as a non-American "Other."

    This is sometimes accurately addressed and criticized, but I think what you're talking about is where it's then also exploited to dismiss legitimate criticisms of the Administration as simple racism.

    So because there's a considerable contingent of racists among the right, when those who aren't racist and have grievances with the economy, unemployment, the healthcare mandate, etc. they make clear, they're easier lumped in with the racists than responded to on the merits of their arguments.

    It's justified as a response to actual racism, but also utilized as an illegitimate panacea to act as though all criticism of the president stems from racism.
     
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  5. theDoctorisIn
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    theDoctorisIn Senior Mod Staff Member Senior USMB Moderator

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    The issue is that perhaps 10% of the Left's complaints of "racism" are factual - which brings us into a "Boy who cried wolf" situation.

    Now, legitimate claims of racism are dismissed immediately as "playing the race card".
     
  6. California Girl
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    Ummmmm, you said 'boy'. That's racist, that is.
     
  7. Charles_Main
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    It is no different than back in the 50's when the right labeled everyone who did not agree with them as Communists.

    The difference is it seems to be the only response you get from liberals anymore.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2010
  8. Dr.Traveler
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    I've noticed this too. It's allowed a sort of "legitmate racism" to creep into politics recently. Point it out and you're playing the race card means the conversation ends there.

    I think we're seeing a ratching up off racism and anti-semitism on both sides of the spectrum, and the fact we've "played out" the race card has left us woefully unable to address this.
     
  9. Madeline
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    I dun know where you get this figure of 10%. My guess is, American Muslims are 99% correct when they guess the bad reception they've received was racially motivated. Black Americans, mebbe not so much. If they are wealthy, it could be a once in a lifetime thingie. If poor, a daily occurrence. Hispanics likely have similar experiences: wealth erases race, poverty highlights it.

    Quentin is correct; it is unhelpful to slam anyone who criticizes Obama as a "racist" even though we all know, occassionally this is exactly what powers the remarks. On the other hand, it is naive to the point of Pollyanna-ism to pretend a poor, black, inner-city kid has the same shot in life as a white, middle class suburban one does and I get fed up with both claims. Dishonesty annoys me.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2010
  10. Sheldon
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    Sheldon Senior Member

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    I have no idea how accurate that ten percent is, but I agree with the overall point.

    Just random speculation here. I think the race-card as it's being used now by some on the left is along this line of thought:

    The criticisms of Obama are unreasonable because they aren't based in fact or reality. These criticisms must be based on emotion. That emotion is a mistrust of Obama. That mistrust comes from a deep-seeded mistrust of black people in general; maybe it's subconscious, but it's still racist. So an argument against Obama may not be racist in-and-of itself, but the motive to make that argument is founded in racist emotion.

    That's as far as I can figure. I'll cop to saying that I'm making this projection based on how I view the birfers. But I don't in any way think that about any and all criticism of Obama; if I did, I'd be calling myself a racist.
     

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